Thomas Jefferson Papers
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George Poindexter to James Monroe, [before 20 March 1813]

George Poindexter to James Monroe

[before 20 Mar. 1813]

Mr Poindexter with his respects to Mr monroe asks the favor of him to convey the Guinea grass seed, sent herewith, to mr Jefferson. Mr Poindexter regrets that through the carelessness of his servant the grass seed were mixed with some of another kind, and a quantity of them lost, by being loose in the Portmanteau. mr P. however hopes that enough of them remain to make an experiment, of the utility of this discription of grass, in the Latitude of monticello. The Letter from Doct. Brown was also much worn, & the seal broken in the portmanteau, it having, been thrown by the boy among some silver. mr P. hopes mr Jefferson will have the goodness to excuse these accidents; they frequently occur in so long a journey, as that from Natchez to Washington.

RC (DLC: TJ Papers, 198:35222); undated; addressed: “The Honble James monroe.” Enclosure: Samuel Brown to TJ, 1 Oct. 1812. Receipt by TJ on 20 Mar. 1813 acknowledged in TJ to Brown, 17 Apr. 1813.

George Poindexter (ca. 1779–1853), attorney and public official, was a native of Louisa County. He lacked formal schooling but read law with local attorneys and was admitted in 1798 to the Albemarle County bar. His early clients included Elizabeth Henderson, Bennett Henderson’s widow. Poindexter moved to Mississippi Territory in 1802 and soon rose to prominence, serving as attorney general, as a member of the territorial legislature, and from 1807–13 as territorial delegate to the United States Congress. From 1813–17 he was federal district judge for the territory, and in the latter year he made important contributions to the drafting of the state’s first constitution. Poindexter served from 1817–19 as the first Mississippi state member of the United States House of Representatives. He was governor from 1820–21, and during his tenure he began his codification of state law, which was completed in 1822 and adopted and published shortly thereafter as the Revised Code of the Laws of Mississippi (Natchez, 1824). Poindexter lost a race for a Congressional seat in 1822 but served in the United States Senate, 1830–35. Initially a supporter of Andrew Jackson, he soon broke with the president and ran unsuccessfully as a states’-rights Whig for reelection to the Senate. Poindexter first retired to Kentucky but later returned to Mississippi and practiced law there until his death (ANB description begins John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography, 1999, 24 vols. description ends ; DAB description begins Allen Johnson and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography, 1928–36, 20 vols. description ends ; Woods, Albemarle description begins Edgar Woods, Albemarle County in Virginia, 1901, repr. 1991 description ends , 77, 110, 380; Poindexter to TJ, 7 Mar. 1808 [DLC]; Terr. Papers description begins Clarence E. Carter and John Porter Bloom, eds., The Territorial Papers of the United States, 1934–75, 28 vols. description ends , vols. 5–6; Washington Daily National Intelligencer, 10 Sept. 1853).

Index Entries

  • Brown, Samuel; and seeds for TJ search
  • grass; Guinea search
  • Guinea grass search
  • Monroe, James; and G. Poindexter search
  • Monroe, James; and seeds for TJ search
  • Poindexter, George; and seed for TJ search
  • Poindexter, George; carries letter search
  • Poindexter, George; identified search
  • seeds; grass search
  • seeds; sent to TJ search